January Mud

Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac opens with an essay titled “January”:

January Thaw
Each year, after the midwinter blizzards, there comes a night of thaw when the tinkle of dripping water is heard in the land.

It’s a beautiful essay describing a day of reprieve amid winter’s torment.  I re-read it at the beginning of this month in anticipation of winter–finally winter!–around these Middle Lands.  No such luck.  We are stuck in Janaury mud.  And ice.  And, if you live on a homestead with a lot of animals, poo.  Such poo!  My Northwoods heart can’t take much more of this.  I snapped all these photos as I was doing chores in the afternoon yesterday.

I kept hearing Lee Greenwood’s Tennessee Christmas in my head as I slopped through slop.  And a bunch of other sappy Christmas classics. I’ve obviously got a case of snow-withdrawl.


Come on weatherman,

Give us a forecast snowy white.

Can’t you hear the prayers
Of every childlike heart tonight?


Rockies are calling,
Denver snow falling,
Somebody said it’s four feet deep.



The song ends with some insanity about not really needing a lot of snow, only needing love, blahblahblah…I really was only hearing the first few lines in my head.
My ski trail is melting!
A few flakes were attempting to pass from the heavens to me, but it was slim pickins’. We could really use some snow.

I’ve truly had enough January mud.
I’ll pass on this epic thaw & take a blizzard to go, thank you.

A tender Tennessee Christmas
Is the only Christmas for me.

P.S.  I apologize if you, too, are now humming Lee Greenwood songs.


14 thoughts on “January Mud

  1. Oh Rubes – I can just see your place in my mind’s eye through your great pictures – still a beautiful place even with the mud!!! February is right around the corner.
    Hugs, Mom


    • Yes I am humming that song, but it is lovely, and your photos are

      I am way up North on the Canadian Border and we do nott have much snow this year either…..( shhhhhhh I better not say that huh?) but it is strange, and , being from farm country in Illinois, I do remember the mud…damp, and very different winters. When we moved here and bought our small resort, the winters were minus fifty…below….and TONS of snow…..now….many years later, we have hardly any snow..and still the twenty and thirty below…between warm ups like this 37 above we had today. SO……I will send you a bit of our snow ok? I have the word in…and thank you for your lovely photos..and thoughts.—Merri

      Liked by 1 person

      • I would LOVE if you would send me a bit of snow! Wouldn’t that be great? As a child I used to spend a week with my family up on the Gunflint Trail at a resort (skiing, snowshoeing, hiking, dog sledding, ice fishing) and it is still, all these years later, one of my favorite places on earth. So sad to think there is no snow there right now! Your comments are much appreciated, Merri, thank you. I hope you get lots more snow in the next couple months!


  2. Oh nooo!!! Mud? Puddles? Poo?! that really stinks (hehehe). Seriously though, I do hope the weather shifts and the snow returns as I’m sure these kind of days are not easy on a person. Fingers crossed for you, Ruby. xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, lots and lots of poo! 😉 We got a quick dusting of snow over the weekend and then again Monday morning and it’s all melting…we now have even more puddles… & poo! I have learned to embrace my muck boots. I kind of like wearing them, so I guess that’s something! I really enjoyed your snowshoeing photo essay–if I can’t have any snow myself, I am so glad there are those that do & enjoy it. xx


  3. Excuse me- but how could I have missed this beautiful post?
    Ruby I love your perspective with your wellies- especially in the puddle very clever series. Bummer with the ski trail I know this sight all to well. I did check out The sand county almanac- on cd so I can hear it when I drive the kids to and fro to school. I hope you all are feeling better.

    Liked by 1 person

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